Police officers in Papua New Guinea (PNG) who are responsible for burning more than 200 homes to the ground close to a gold mine must be investigated and those found responsible for human rights violations prosecuted, said Amnesty International.
The homes were set ablaze during an early morning raid on Friday 6 June in Wingima village, close to Porgera gold mine in central PNG, according to community leaders.
The mine is majority-owned and operated by Canadian mining giant Barrick Gold Corporation.
“These illegal and dangerous actions endangered lives and have left scores of families homeless,” said Kate Schuetze, Pacific Researcher at Amnesty International.
“Destroying people’s homes and livelihoods in this way violates international laws against forced evictions. All those responsible must be prosecuted. Any response to illegal mining or other unlawful activities must be proportionate and meet international standards. Setting ablaze a village is a blatantly excessive response.”